Mourning Virgin, Southern Germany, 17th century
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Mourning Virgin

Mourning Virgin

Ivory
Southern Germany, 17th century

Dimensions

Height
23 cm; 9 in.

Provenance

With Albrecht Neuhaus, Würzburg
Private collection, Rhineland

This superb quality figure of the Virgin mourning shows her, hands clapsed in prayer, gazing towards heaven, a stance suggesting that the work originates from a crucifixion group and was positioned at the foot of the cross. Designed for a frontal viewpoint, she stands in contrapposto, left knee bent, the toe of her right shoe emerging from beneath the folds of her robe. Lips parted, eyes open, her anguish and sorrow are palpable. With intricately carved voluminous drapery, she wears a veil tied loosely just below her neck, the sweeping folds of her overmantel serving as a second head covering. The superior craftsmanship of this beautiful work is particularly evident in the effective contrasts created between the smooth and pleated sections of the Virgin's robes.